Youth Indoor Soccer League Rules

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Reisterstown Regional Park/Sportsplex
Indoor Soccer Rules & Notes - Winter 2018 Season

Updated 02-01-18

The following rules are taken from the United States Indoor Soccer Association 2004 Edition rulebook with modifications for house rules, revised 10/26/2015 and Abridged for Players and Spectators. Reisterstown Regional Park/Sportsplex follows the USISA rules with certain exceptions. Whenever there is a conflict with the USISA rules, the Reisterstown Regional Park/Sportsplex rules will take precedence.

Player Divisions (All divisions are Co-ed)
For the 2018 Winter Indoor Season there will be four divisions:

Grades 3/4 (herein referred to as 3/4), Grades 5/6 (herein referred to as 5/6), Grades 7/8 (herein referred to as 7/8), High School (herein referred to as H/S)


Playing Up/Playing Down
Players are not allowed to play in a younger age group, however, they may be allowed to play up one group, if desire and skill merit, on a case-by-case basis. To be determined by league coordinator, coaches and parents if necessary.

Requests to be teamed with particular players, or to play for a particular coach, are not permitted.
Players are asked to register with their correct personal information. Any players found to have registered with misinformation will be removed from the league and their registration fees refunded in full.


Season Dates

Evaluations will be held at the Reisterstown Sportsplex 401 Mitchell Drive, Reisterstown, MD 21136.


Evaluation dates and times: TBD


Note: evaluation sessions are not tryouts. If players are registered for the league they are ensured of a roster spot. The evaluation sessions are to assist in creating rosters that are as competitive as possible. We urge all players to try and attend their evaluation session, but if they cannot attend they will still be placed on a roster.


Players should wear age appropriate shin guards, soccer socks, and athletic apparel to the evaluations. Please note that shin guards need to be covered completely by soccer socks. Regular athletic shoes or indoor soccer shoes are allowed on the indoor turf field. Outdoor soccer shoes, and/or any other type of shoe with a cleat, are not permitted.



 Player ratings to be utilized at evaluations for roster creation:
1. Learning the basic skills and needs a lot of coaching
2. Has basic skills and the ability to be better
3. Pretty athletic, has the energy, learning the game, definite potential for growth, pursues the ball
4. All around athlete who has skill and is aggressive on the field
5. Top (10%) in the league; a definite stand out on any team


Schedules – Regular Season

Division Game Schedules are currently being coordinated and finalized.


The season will run from Jan 2, 2018 thru April 15, 2018, including evaluations and playoffs.

There will be no league activities on any Wednesday.

There will be no league activities on the following dates: All Wednesdays, Jan 15, Feb 19, Mar 29 thru April 2

As in seasons past, each game slot will be one hour in length.

Games will be held on the following days and times:

3/4 Division

Saturdays and Sundays


5/6 Division

Saturdays and Sundays


7/8 Division

Saturdays and Sundays


H/S Division

Fridays, Saturdays and Sundays

(specific division schedules will be forthcoming)


Practices will be held on the following days and times (for 3/4, 5/6, and 7/8 divisions only):

Mondays - beginning on the hour at 6:00p, 7:00p, 8:00p

Tuesdays - beginning on the hour at 6:00p, 7:00p, 8:00p

Thursdays - beginning on the hour at 6:00p, 7:00p, 8:00p


The plan for the 2018 season is for each team to play 9 regular season games and at least one playoff game. Note: this may be affected by inclement weather.



There will be one practice per team during the first week of the season (including H/S teams). After that H/S teams will not hold practices. Teams in the other divisions will practice once every other week throughout the season.


Field Of Play
Markings: The field is enclosed in dasher boards except for the goals, which are inset. There is a halfway line intersected by a center circle mark. There is a white line on each side of the field parallel to the center line.

Penalty Area: As marked.

Penalty Mark: Shall be placed at the top of each Penalty Area.

Soccer Ball
3/4 Division: Size 4;
5/6 Division: Size 5; 7/8 Division: Size 5; H/S Division: Size 5

Requests to be teamed with particular players, or to play for a particular coach are not permitted. A parent who coaches will have their own child/children on their team. There will be a maximum of two coaches per team.

Players on the field, including goalkeeper: TBD
Grade 3/4 Division: 7 v 7

Grade 5/6 Division: 7 v 7
Grade 7/8 Division: 7 v7
High School Division: 7 v 7


Minimum of 5 (including goalie) players required, for each team, to begin a game. If 5 players have not arrived within 10 minutes after the scheduled start, the game will be forfeited by the team without enough players. If one team has fewer players, the opposing coach can only play with a maximum of a one player advantage. If a team is forced to forfeit a game the two teams may still play a scrimmage game, not to count in the standings, if both coaches and players agree to participate. This scrimmage game cannot be officiated by the officials.

Free substitution is allowed without stopping the game. Incoming player may not enter the field of play until the outgoing player is at the door of his/her bench. A goalie can only be substituted at quarter marks or due to injury. If a player is injured both teams may sub at least one player. If the coach comes on the field to see to an injured player, that player must be subbed out and both teams can also substitute additional players.

All players who show up dressed for the game, must play at least one quarter of the game. The only exceptions would be for injury, sickness, etc., or at the request of a parent to a coach asking that a child not play, or play less time. If a player arrives late for a game, the coach is only required to play that child for half of the remaining game time.

Other Player Rules
- No player can be assigned to a team until rated by the coaches. Unless waived by the league commissioner.
- A player must be on the current roster and registered in order to participate in league games or practices.
- Loaning or borrowing players for games is strictly prohibited.
- Any team caught using an unregistered or no-roster player will forfeit the game or games in which that player or players were/was involved. Additionally, the coach will most likely be removed from the program. To be decided upon by the league commissioner.
- Any player that is bleeding must come off the field and may not return until the bleeding stops. The cut or injury needs to be covered completely and inspected by the referees. The return of the player to the match is at the discretion of the referees. If the jersey is bloody the player will have to wear a different jersey or shirt.

- If a goalie is injured and has to leave the field, he/she cannot return to the goal until the next quarter or half time break.

- All players, both male and female, are rated on the same scale of ability.

- Players wear their team's shirt, consisting of the same colors, age appropriate shin guards, soccer socks, and indoor footwear. No spikes/cleats are allowed.
- Jewelry and other accessories are prohibited. Starter earring studs must be taped or band-aided.

- Eye glasses need to be worn with some type of a strap.
- Hair accessories allowed only if tied or covered.
- Goalkeepers must wear jersey colors distinguished from all other field players and from the Referees.

-·Casts - all Cast must be wrapped with 1/2" slow recovery cell foam. No bubble wrap, or ace bandages covering a hard cast. Referees reserve the final decision. Also the player will need a medical release to play. The National Federation of State High School Associations requires a right-arm hard cast to be covered on all surfaces with high-density, closed-cell polyurethane no less than ½ inch thick or an alternative similar material. Vendors of sports medicine equipment sell kits containing sheets of foam to cover casts; the foam meets the federation standards.


The decisions of the Referees regarding facts connected with play and interpretations of the Rules are final. Referees must read and understand all rules of play.

Duration of Game
Games are two 24 minute halves in duration. The clock will start promptly at scheduled game time. There is a running clock. The game clock counts down continuously through each half. There will be one timeout available for each team to use per match. Halftime will be no more than a minute and a half (90 seconds). Warm-up time before a match is not guaranteed. It is the referees’ responsibility to maintain the game schedule.


Not enough Players: Game clock begins at scheduled game time start. Minimum # of players required is 5. If either team is short players; 10 minutes is given from game time start for required players to arrive. If required # of players arrive the game begins with the option given to the team with more players to play "down" some players (or player) to make it even. If the required # of minimum players does not arrive for either team, after 10 minutes have elapsed from game start time, the game is a forfeit by the team with less than enough players. The teams may then scrimmage if they choose, but the referees are not allowed to officiate the match.

Start and Restart of Play
Restarts take place by either a Kickoff, Free Kick, Kick-In, Goal Kick, Corner Kick, or Dropped Ball.

A Kickoff from the Center Mark starts play at the beginning of each Half and after every goal. The ball may travel in any direction. A player who starts play may not again play the ball until it touches another player.

- For all kicks: Permission does not have to be acknowledged for the following; if any defender is less than 10 feet away from the ball being kicked, and the ball hits the defender, it's an automatic 2 minute penalty for the defender.

- Defensive Wall: At least 10 Feet away until the ball is in play
- Ball in Play: After it has been touched.
- Time Limit: Kick must be taken within 5 seconds
- Restriction: Kicker cannot touch the ball until another player has touched it.

Net violation: If a ball hits a ceiling net a free kick shall be awarded to the opposing team at the center of the white line closest to the place where the ball hit the net.

KICK-IN (see above *) - the ball will be placed two (2) feet from the wall at the approximate place the ball left the playing field

GOAL KICK (see above *) - The ball is placed on a line 2 feet in front of the goal line. The ball may be kicked in or picked up and played by the keeper. Players on opposing teams must be outside the penalty area. The ball is not in play until it has passed outside of the penalty area. If the goal kick is received inside of the penalty area, the goal kick shall be taken over.

CORNER KICK (see above *) - Ball placed on the corner kick spot (no corner-kick arc)

DROPPED BALL - If neither team has clear possession of the ball at a stoppage, the Referee restarts play with a dropped ball.



A shootout shall be awarded for any of the following fouls committed by a defending player in his defensive half of the field: (a) A foul from behind against an attacking player, having control of the ball and one or no defensive players between himself and the goal. (b) Any foul where he is the last player on his team between the attacking player with the ball and the goal. (c)A shootout shall be given if a time penalty foul is committed inside the penalty area. Player is shown a yellow card or red card, placed into penalty box, and foul is recorded on time sheet. The game clock is stopped during this process.

Taking of the Shootout: This is considered a MINI-Game (a) All players are removed from playing field in their own team box for the duration of the kick except shooter and goalkeeper. (b) Ball is placed at center white line closest to opponents goal. (c) The goalkeeper has at least one foot on his goal line and may not move off of it until after the Referee whistles the Shootout to begin. (d) Once the Referee whistles the Shootout to begin, from that moment, attacking player has 6 seconds to score. Player taking the Shootout plays the ball forward using any legal manner to score (e.g., direct shot on goal, dribbling and shooting, playing the ball off of the boards). Referee will end shootout with whistle after goal is scored or end of shootout duration. If a goal is scored, sanctioned player is allowed back to the field of play, and restart is a kickoff. If no goal is score after 6 seconds, the attacking team retains possession with a free kick from the center line. Teams are allowed back on the field of play, with sanctioned player remaining in penalty box for remainder of penalty time. Game clock restarts with taking of the kick. The goalkeeper shall be restricted to goalkeeping privileges while inside the penalty area. Any foul committed by the goalkeeper, regardless of field position, shall be penalized by an additional Power Play penalty and the taking of a penalty kick by any member of the offended team. The goalkeeper will not serve the appropriate time penalty, which shall be recorded; the team coach may choose a player to serve the goal keepers time penalty. If the shooter commits any foul during the shootout, play is stopped, and MINI-game is over starting with free kick to attacking team at the center.


FOUR FOUL PENALTY: High School division only. Any player who accumulates four (4) fouls in one half will be assessed a two (2) minute Power Play Time Penalty – Yellow Card. If the individual player accumulates an additional four (4) fouls in the same half, he will be assessed a (5) minute Time Penalty along with a Red Card. Player is removed from game and coach’s choice on player to serve the HARD penalty. Hard penalty = will not be released early for goal scored by opponent.

TEAM PENALTY: Any team which accumulates 12 team fouls per half shall be assessed a 2 minute TEAM penalty for persistent infringement. Coach may choose a player to serve this penalty, but will play the next 2 minutes short one player on floor. If a goal is scored, the player is released from the penalty box.


Heading the Ball

Consistent with the US Soccer Federation guidelines, heading the ball will no longer be permitted for players in the 3/4 and 5/6 divisions.

When a player deliberately heads the ball in a game, an indirect free kick will be awarded to the opposing team from the spot of the offense. If the deliberate header occurs within the goal area, the indirect free kick should be taken on the goal area line parallel to the goal line at the point nearest to where the infringement occurred. If a player does not deliberately head the ball a drop ball will occur.

A team scores a goal when the whole of the ball legally passes over the Goal Line. A goal may be scored directly from a Kickoff or Restart.

Fouls and Other Violations
The league will follow basic FIFA rules with special attention to the following:
- Sliding and or slide tackle results in an automatic yellow card
- Any foul that occurs inside the penalty area, the ball must be brought to the top of the penalty area circle for the restart.
- Reisterstown Regional Park/Sportsplex House Rule – Any player found to be using foul language loud enough that players, referees, and/or spectators can hear it will be given a yellow card and will have to sit out for the reminder of the half, for the first offense. The player will also need to leave the players box and watch the remainder of the game from the other side of the field. If a 2nd offense is committed during the same game the player will get a red card and will be removed from the game. Again, t
he player will also need to leave the players box and watch the remainder of the game from the other side of the field. If any player is removed from more than one game during a season they will most likely receive a multi-game suspension or be suspended from the league for the remainder of the season. To be determined by the league commissioner.
- Boarding – No boarding will be tolerated. Any player who checks another player into the boards will receive a yellow card for the first offense and a red card (and game ejection) for the second.
The player will also need to leave the players box and watch the remainder of the game from the other side of the field. If any player receives a red card in more than one game, that player will also receive a one game suspension after receipt of their second red card. This is an extremely serious issue and there will be no warnings or second chances of any kind issued. If any player is suspended from more than one game during a season they will most likely receive a multi-game suspension or be suspended from the league for the remainder of the season. To be determined by the league commissioner.


Head Injuries and Concussion Protocol

If a player is suspected of having suffered any kind of head trauma, whether from contact with another players body, or the field surface (thin carpet over concrete), or the boards; said player will be immediately removed from the game. The referees and coaches then reserve the right to keep the player out of the remainder of the contest, for their own safety. Prior to the next game (or practice), the players parent/parents must provide written authorization to the league commissioner that the player has been cleared to resume physical activity, before the player will be allowed back on the field.

Goalkeeper Violations
The opposing team receives a Free Kick for the following violations by the Goalkeeper:
- A Three-Line Violation occurs when the Goalkeeper propels the ball in the air across the three lines towards the opponent's Goal without touching the Perimeter Wall, another player or a Referee on the field of play
- Illegal Handling: Bringing the ball from outside of the Penalty Arch to his hand within it, or receiving the ball again after a Goalkeeper Distribution without the ball's having first touched another player
- Pass Back: Handling the ball, having been passed deliberately and directly to him by a teammate; except that he may handle a ball which a teammate passes to him by the head, chest, or knee and without “trickery" (the use of a wall or foot to flick the ball to a head, chest, or knee before making the pass). 
- Five Seconds: Controlling the ball with either his hand or foot inside of his Penalty Arch for over five (5) seconds
- In the event of a goalkeeper penalty, the goalkeeper can remain in the game and the penalty can be served by another player. In the event of a second penalty by the goalkeeper in the same game they will be ejected from the game.
- Any goalkeeper infraction will result in a free kick for the opposing team from the top of the arc.

Advantage Rule: The Referee allows play to continue, notwithstanding the commission of an offense, when the team against which it has been committed will benefit from an existing offensive advantage.

The following penalties apply to offenses for which a Card is issued (subject to further action by the Administrative Authority). All must be submitted by the referee on the Soccer Data Sheet.
- Yellow Card: player 2 minute penalty; team plays down until a goal is scored or 2 minutes has elapsed (carries over to the second half)
- Red Card: player game ejection PLUS next game; team will play down for 5 minutes (carries over to the second half). If a coach is issued a Red Card, they will be removed from the league for the remainder of season.

NOTE: All suspensions will be through the end of league play after the teams next scheduled game. Players and coaches who are suspended may attend games as spectators (but may not be on the bench side of facility during games) during the suspension, as long as appropriate behavior is displayed.

Penalty Kicks
(a) The ball is placed at the Penalty Mark and;
(b) The Goalkeeper has at least one foot on his Goal Line until the ball is in play and;
(c) The player taking the Penalty Kick may not touch the ball again until the ball has been touched by another player.

- Ball is placed on the penalty mark on top of the penalty area.
- The ball must go forward to be in play, retake the kick if not performed correctly.
- The kicker cannot play the ball a second time until another player has touched it. If the kicker does touch the ball before it touches another player, whistle for the infraction and the ball is awarded to the non offending team.

- Kicker identified and the goalkeeper remains on his line, facing the kicker, between the goalposts until the ball has been kicked. As in the outdoor procedure, the goalkeeper may move laterally on his line before the kick is taken.
- The players other than the kicker are located on the white line and cannot be actively involved in the play UNTIL the ball has been properly put in play.
- Should a penalty kick be awarded and time runs out in either half, the penalty kick is taken between only the kicker and the goalkeeper. All players except for the kicker and goalkeeper are precluded from active involvement and there can be no opportunity for the kicker to score from ANY rebound.

Coaches are responsible for their behavior and the behavior of their players and spectators. Game referees, Reisterstown Sportsplex staff, and the league commissioner reserve the right to suspend or revoke registration of any player engaging in disorderly conduct. Harassment of any type will not be tolerated; to or from anyone in the arena including players, coaches, officials, spectators, and parents.

No more than two (2) coaches will be allowed in the player’s box at one time during any game. No one other than the coaches and uniformed players are permitted in the player’s box. All others must be seated or standing on the spectator’s side of the playing surface.

Win = 2 points
Tie = 1 point
Loss = 0 points

No Tie breakers
Regular season games that are tied at the end of regulation time will end as ties. There will be no overtime or shootouts for regular season games.


Mercy Rule

If a team is ahead in scoring during a match by 5 (or more) goals, the team that is losing can play with an additional player. If the lead shrinks below 5 goals the losing team must remove the extra player. As long as the winning team maintains the 5 goal (or more) lead the losing team may continue to play with an additional player. If the losing team does not have any additional players to sub onto the field the leading team will play with one less player.

Playoff Tournament

A seeded single elimination format playoff tournament will be played for each of the four divisions. Seeding will be determined based on regular season records. Dates for these games will be determined and will take place in the latter part of March, 2017. The teams finishing first and second in their division tournament will receive trophies.


Playoff Extra Time

In the event of a tie game at the conclusion of regulation the following playoff overtime format will be followed: both teams will play with two less field players, no clock will be utilized, and the first goal by either team will count as the game winner. Note: any yellow card penalty/penalties with time remaining to be served from regulation time will carry over into overtime.



All games will be played at the Reisterstown
Sportsplex located at 401 Mitchell Drive
Reisterstown MD 21136.
Inclement Weather: To learn whether or not
the Sportsplex will be open due to inclement
weather, pls ck status of the Baltimore County 
Snow Emergency Plan using the link below.
If the Snow Emergency Plan is active, the
facility will be closed.